Friday, July 16, 2010

Mom Finds Cure Online After Doctors Fail To

She figured out on her own that Hayley had a rare but curable condition known as POTS, or postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome.

POTS, which Hayley suffered from for nine long months before she got the proper treatment, is difficult to diagnose because it is unusual and its symptoms -- stomach aches, nausea and vomiting, racing heart -- are common for a variety of other conditions, according to AOL's children's health specialist Dr. Jim Sears.

"It's pretty rare," Sears, a pediatrician who hosts "The Doctors," told AOL Health. "[Hayley's experience] is the typical story of someone who has vague symptoms. I'm not surprised that nobody could figure this out."

POTS affects the autonomic nervous system and causes a host of random, unpleasant side effects: fatigue, violent vomiting, intolerance to exercise, unquenchable thirst and tachycardia, or rapid heartbeat. Only about 1 percent of all teenagers are diagnosed with the syndrome, two-thirds of them girls, and about 80 percent of those who do have it are female, most of them of child-bearing age.
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Many CFS patients have POTS.  Some have found help from drinking water with sea salt.

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